Sometime ago, I was invited by a well-known university in Quezon City to give financial advice to their employees. I counseled 5 people separately, one on one for 30 minutes each. A marketing Director at 23 years old, a librarian at 51 years old, a professor at 48 years old, a department dean at 59 years old, and another teacher at 46 years old. Their income level ranges from P25, 000 – P 60, 000. While counseling them, it was quite obvious that they have high intellect. The problem is not their IQ, the problem is that they are not “financially literate.”
Financial Literacy is simply knowing how to handle your money.
When it comes to personal finance, I’m not claiming to know it all, but I was bombarded with questions about money that I thought were basic. Questions like: “I don’t make a budget, do I really need one?” or “I’m renting a house, how much should I allocate for rental?” The person who asked the question about rental was paying 70% of her income to it. No wonder she was having a hard time financially.
It goes to show that we don’t learn how to handle money in school. We learn how to handle money from our parents, from other people, and from our experiences. But being financially literate should be a mandatory goal for all of us. After all, one of the reasons we go to work is to earn money. Why can’t we spend our money skillfully? No matter what profession you are in, make it a priority to be financially literate. Life will be so much easier.